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tv   Charlie Rose  PBS  February 16, 2011 11:00pm-12:00am PST

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>> charlie: welcome to our program. diana enrea kez of "the new york times" has talked to bernie madoff in prison and we'll talk about what heçó said with peter lattman of "the new york times" and brian ross of abc news. >> he had to know but his attitude is if you're doing something wrong, we don't want to know. >> charlie: and we continue with three italian reporters joining me to talk about the scandal involving italian prime minister silvio berlusconi. he'll tell us about the man and the charges. we conclude this evening with the great james taylor.
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♪ i've seen fire and i've seen rain ♪ i've seen sunny days i thought they'd never end. >> charlie: an interview with bernie madoff, the possible captioning sponsored by rose communications from our studios in new york city, this is charlie rose. captioning sponsored by rose communications captioned by media access group at wgbh trial of prime minister berlusconi of italy and james taylor and some tunes when we continue. if you've had a coke in the last 20 years, ( screams ) you've had a hand in giving college scholarships... and support to thousands of our nation's... most promising students. ♪ ( coca-cola 5-note mnemonic ) maybe you want school kids have more exposure to the arts. maybe you want to provide meals for the needy.
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or maybe you want to help when the unexpected happens. whatever you want to do, members project from american express can help you take the first step. vote, volunteer, or donate for the causes you believe in at take charge of making a difference. captioning sponsored by rose communications from our studios in new york city, this is charlie rose. >> charlie: bernie madoff has
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been in prison since 2009 for defrauding thousands of victims of billions of dollars. during that period he's rarely spoken out. now in an interview with "the new york times" he claims that major banks and hedge funds were somehow complicit in this ponzi scheme. also says that his family knew nut big the fraud. joining me now brian ross chief investigationive correspondent for abc news, he reported on the story for world news tonight earlier this evening and here is what he said. >> among those accused by the bankruptcy trustee, the owners of the new york mets, the cats family. fred and madoff became close personal friends and had intertwined business interests. in the times interview madoff said willpon did not know of the scheme. in a lawsuit asking for a billion dollars the trustee has received e-mails from willpon's advisors warned him of madoff for years. quote notwithstanding our concerns, the willpon and cats family continued to invest with
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madoff's securities unquote the advisers wrote. at the spring training he said that the family denied the allegations. >> we're going to fight it and we're going to be victorious in the end. >> charlie: joining me is peter lattman of the new york time. he's written extensively about the madoff case many i'm pleased to have both of them here about this startling story today that was in "the new york times." tell me about how she got this interview. >> by the way, we asked her to come. i can't really get into the specifics of it other than she did secure the very first jail house interview with bernie madoff. she did it on tuesday down in buttner, north carolina. she's had a relationship with him, obviously. she knew him before the ponzi scheme was revealed in december 08. she had been covering the brokerage market and knew him from the positions he had there. she had a long standing relationship with him.
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she saw in the article there were some e-mails that came out. she had some correspondence with mad you. >> charlie: before the interview. >> before the interview. and that was part of the interview and the comments he made in the e-mails. on tuesday she's down there and delivered today's story in the newspaper. >> charlie: what did he say about banks and hedge funds in terms of might have been complicit and certainly should have known what he was doing. >> right. he didn't name any names specifically and he said there was willful blind no, sir. they should have known more importantly he said his family didn't know. he mentioned specific investors like willpon on the papers. but he said the banks knew. look, diana enriquzi he's sayig the banks nude and should have known and the trustees had enough knowledge they should have realized this was a pawn e
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scheme. >> charlie: tell me what you thought when you read this. >> great coup for diana. i thought he was continuing to be the wizard, quite frankly. >> charlie: based on what he said you think he's lying, continuing to lie. >> yes. he said he felt he was instrumental in helping the bankruptcy trustee recover some of the assets and track them down. he spent four days talking to them, talking to some people in that shop today. they say that's just completely untrue. the man is incapable of telling the truth. that his health is really unimportant and that he seems to be protecting certain people, his family and close friends who are most winners in this scheme. while pointing the finger at unnamed banks that he said i think really had to know. now that's of course as you said, that's what the trustee has alleged that the banks had to know but no one specifically in that group i think has ever been accused of precisely knowing. >> charlie: tell me about the
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suit by the trustee and what is its likelihood of success. >> there's a serious of lawsuits against banks and hedge funds that helped facilitate this by either handling the investment money or steering money to madoff. what the trustee essentially is saying is that all the red flags that went up, the guy had an account in a small office happened lynn supposedly $60 million which is inconceivable. people couldn't replicate the investment, the mysterious sort of black box system he had. they couldn't figure out how it worked. nobody could figure it out. the trustee is saying i think that those are so many red flags they must have known something was amiss there but they chose to ignore it because they were all getting rich off it. >> charlie: is he right when he said people should have known, including the federal government enforcement agencies. >> right, exactly. so you have banks like j.p. morgan, you have families like the willpons whose awe queued of should have known this was a
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ponsy scheme the banks say add you mentioned the sec was in there multiple times. they have full investigative power. they didn't catch anything so how do you expect us to. the issue you're getting at is did these investors have their heads buried so far in the sand they should have known. if you read the willpon lawsuit there were multiple examples where they were warned. they had hedge funds that looked at madoff something they owned. the head of that fund said to the willpon cats family who owns the said we don't know how he's going to make money. we'll take a pass. this is the fund they owned. so you ask yourself should there have been red flags raised and should they have gone to bernie madoff and asked them what was going on and they didn't. this is sophisticated businessmen. >> charlie: do you know anybody who saw it and said this doesn't make sense. >> some major banks pulled out portions of their money, advised
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clients not to invest there. >> charlie: because it doesn't ring true. >> it doesn't ring true. there were others who wouldn't put money in or advised cliects to put in money because they looked at it and said he won't explain the secret formula he has and we can't figure it out and we don't think it's safe. in the lawsuit against j.p. morgan there are e-mails from some people inside saying this isn't right, i'm concerned about this. there are suggestions of fraud here. but as you say the sec had these same allegations and they supposedly investigated, did a lousy job of it and gave them a pass. >> charlie: we don't know the answer of this but he speaks to the question of his family. his wife continues to me s him, as i understand from this piece. >> that's right. >> charlie: ruth, lives in florida, visits on a regular basis. a son committed suicide which is obviously bitter. >> he's angry. actually he seems to be angry at the news media for its coverage. >> charlie: of that particular to side. >> he thought it was disgraceful
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coverage and that he was rebutting argument he refused to go to the funeral. in fact he says the prison told him he couldn't negotiation it would represent a public safety issue and he felt there would be a media circus and it would be cruel to put his family through all that. i think one question we don't have an answer to but at least i've heard the family didn't really want him there. mark's widow was sort of mark's disgust with his father is probably what triggered the suicide. >> charlie: is that a reflection of both of the sons. >> they both broke with the father. he took them in and told them the day before he was arrested and he actually asked them for a week, they called the fbi, give me a week to give things in order. they were talking to prosecutors within hours. >> they haven't spoken to him since. >> charlie: so is the assumption on people who know this case is that they did not know, the two sons. >> yes. people, i'd say close to the family, insist that the sons did
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not know. now, again, picard the trustee has a lawsuit between the two sons, peter memoranda madoff who is bernie's brother and i think a niece, shawna. and that's a $200 million lawsuit. in that lawsuit he does allege that they should have known. again this is a civil allegation saying they should have known. he doesn't venture into the criminal realm and none of them have been charged yet. >> charlie: what about the wife. >> as to ruth, well she had started with bernie when they had like a folding table in the apartment. she kept the books early on. and she continued to keep the checking account for the firm. her lawyers said she didn't keep the books reflecting everything. but there's an open question. she has denied it strongly, they didn't know. she has given statements to the public that she did not know and she's appalled this is not the bernie that i knew. so the face it you'd say she didn't know. but the sons reaction when the father told them about the fraud
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saying i'm a conman and we have nothing. their reactions seemed to be appropriate to people who didn't know. they were on the floor crying, very upset. they went to the authorities and turned on their father. ruth had a different reaction. >> charlie: it was what. >> her reaction was to stick by bernie instead of the sons. she had a choice, be with the boys or be with her husband and she chose to be with her husband. i don't know in diana asked the question but one of the things i thought i would like to read about is what is bernie saying about that. about ruth's knowledge. he says the family doesn't know or didn't nod. i wonder about that melf. >> charlie: did this wipe out the willpon's in terms of a significant portion of their holdings or do we know that. >> they had $500 million with madoff that they lost. but what the trustee alleges is that they were net winners. so they took out $300 million more dollars than they had put in over the years. put them in a serious financial bind when the fraud was
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uncovered and the lawsuit really protrays the dramatic crises they were in when the ponzi scheme broke. today jeff willpon at a press conference said the mets aren't for sale. we're going to sell a piece of it to retain liquidity but retain control. some people think in a serious pickle. >> between 300 and a billion is a number they think they'll get out of him. 300 would be the fictitious profits they took out. and them under the law, if they can show that the will pons knew it was a fraud they won't get back even the capital. >> charlie: who is picard suing on behalf. >> the new york lawyer suing on behow far of the victims in the fraud those who lost their money. his theory is that in total about $20 billion is put in, put aside the profits that madoff gave people they thought they had. there's $20 million in his cash
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and his goal to get $20 billion in cash back so everyone is sentlly whole for what they put in. people put money in 20, 30 years ago and expected returns, so there's opportunity lost there. there's a whole contention there. and he wants to take money back from people who didn't do well. >> charlie: does he argue or does he believe picard does not store away some money somewhere that they haven't been able to get their hands on. >> i haven't seen any evidence. they thought that at first going in but from what i've seen it's pretty much out there. he had the homes and he had the life-style. >> let's not forget picard's had a lot of success. he's gone after $90 billion worth of claims. he's already recovered $10 billion. i think 7 was with one investor with this billionaire nobody knew about. >> charlie: what was the most you would want to know.
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>> what did he think would happen when he died. that's maybe a silly thought but i always think about that. when he died, i mean maybe he didn't care because ... >> charlie: he would be dead. >> he would be dead and seemingly didn't care much about his family and the pain he' caus everyone. but i guess it just got to a point where it was sort of the self sustaining thing and it got bigger and bigger. i can never get my arms around how he was able to perpetrate this for so long and not -- >> charlie: how did he believe it will go undiscovered? he answered that it didn't so therefore -- >> there were times when he thought he has been caught. >> a phone call away he said, right. >> charlie: if they looked closely -- >> where are the stocks. he says they're at this company. call they hold my account. but he bought no stocks ever. so he figured it was friday, they're going to call and by monday he would be in handcuffs. they never called, the sec never
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called. and so he was not caught then. and he had a weekend of sort of anticipating what it would be like. so i guess my sense is he knew at some point if he didn't die, and he was leading a very good life, if he didn't die, he would be caught and that day came. >> charlie: most people who run ponzi schemes get caught. they do. so what would you want to ask him? >> i would want to know when and how it started. from the get go in the early 60's when he in that little office, the apartment, did he figure out then i can make more money do this. or did it happen as he said much later. >> charlie: was it a conscious decision. did he make a conscious decision at some point i'm going to go criminal. >> right, yes. >> my own hunch is that early on it became a scheme. and he realized he could do it because he had investors who were not taking their money out and they would roll over when they died and elderly people who lived in the cat skills would
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keep the money in there and it just grew and grew and grew. >> small investors and sort of snow bald into the big ghoabl investors and the austrian bankers. >> they called him the jewish eagle. this is where it would be troublesome for him. how could he be comfortable stealing from ellie and holocaust victims so he could fly around in a private jet. that's a good question. >> charlie: why don't we all fly in tomorrow morning to south carolina and knock on the door and say we have more questions. just a moment, madoff, we have more. thank you peter, thank you brian. great to see you. >> charlie: we continue with the scandal involving silvio berlusconi. a judge told him to go under
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trial for sex with an under aged prostitute. he's charged with abuse of power. the trial is scheduled to begin on april 6th. berlusconi denials the charges in his but first public comawnlt. he said among other things i'm not worried in the least. joining me is anna guaita -- and claudia gatti. i'm pleased to have them here. had this been allowed to continue because berlusconi has money and power. has been allowed to continue because it's italy. tea think you have to put it in perspective. most americans wonder why this is possible. but if you consider what's behind. i mean this is as if bill gates decided to transform microsoft into a political party.
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he also owns cbs, nbc and abc. he controls as the prime minister the editor of pbs. he owned time warner, lowes theatres. citizen cane, george steinbrenner and warren buffett fused into one person. >> charlie: that was his private fortune and then he became prime minister. >> yes. and he appoint his own lawyer chairman of the judiciary committee, changed the law to decriminalize some crimes that he was accused of. and to shorten the statute of limitations of in certain case of trials for trials that he was involved with. >> charlie: exminute to me what happened here. >> he's accused of having had
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sex with a girl that was 17, a prostitute, 17 years old only. so under age. and not only that, he has been accused of having made pressures so that the police will release thisoman that had been arrested for another, an unrelated crime. she was accused of having stolen a necklace from a friend of hers. so berlusconi supposedly called the police station and said that this girl was released and now he's been called to answer for this. but i wanted to add something if i could, to what claudio just said. the this is what is now. in order to understand
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berlusconi how his career began and when it began. it was in 94 when the first so-called republickic that came out after fascism was collapsing and corruption and investigations and all the parties has been involved and in italy there was a terrible exhaustion for parties. and here comes this man who says, a self-made businessman, also charming. his sense of humor may be crass but he has a sense of humor. he treats women gallantly, very elegant, is wealthy. and he has, he comes completely out of politics and he forms a party that is not a party, it's a company. and this is coop de gras, this
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is to explain how berlusconi starts to happen. italians are tied to parties and everybody wanted to be him. >> as you said before in italy, i'm afraid in part it is italy. the fact is that as we were saying before, italy at a certain point came out from a situation in which it had been for decades under two hills, the communist church and the catholic church. and political parties that were indeed i would say on corporations themselves. you said that he created himself but these political parties were set in a way to profit. back then many of the corporations were owned by the government and they would split among political parties the revenues. so this situation had been
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unbearable from the public opinion viewpoint and the way of being was very ridged, very static. it was like someone would go and read a speech for two hours and people utterly board and he cracks jokes and he represents someone who is modern and rich and someone who is reassuring. if he's rich he isn't corrupted except in power hecread some rule that protected himself from previous accusations that he had. but the question i guess is why italians kept voting for him. the thing is that italians in italy all knew what was going on, what were the accusations and this happened before. and yet when they went to election, they still voted for him again. >> charlie: his wife also divorced him did she not. >> wife divorced him. for all practical purposes he's single. now if i had to make a forecast
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i don't think he will go to trial. >> charlie: because. >> because there are some technicalities that are being brought forward and he has some leeway in organizing some complaints that we say that these judges are not trustworthy according to his lawyers. and so that will postpone whatever has to happen and he can also ask and these are technicalities set up of a judgment done by ministers or by public officials. you know here you have impeachment. you don't have regular judges judging the president. >> charlie: do you think he'll go to trial? >> i think that may have a good opinion here. i share what he says. but i would like instead to go back to information in italy. it's true that newspapers do not belong to mr. berlusconi but
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only a small minority of the italian read the newspapers. large majority of italians watch television. >> i think there's an issue of the quality of italian democracy. i think concentration of power, conflict of interest, checks and balances. those are very clear in this country. in italy, it's different. otherwise it would be other than berlusconi. there are other issues. >> charlie: it's interesting. why won't he go to trial. >> lawyers are going to argue lack of jurisdiction by milan tribunal. >> this case is different from all the others. this is an expedited trial. no other trial was ever expedited. in fact many ended up because of the statute of limitations expiring. in this case the statute of limitations on the most serious crime which is not actually abuse of power, it's closer to
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extortion. abuse of power is a degree below that. for that, it's going to be more difficult for berlusconi to get away. it will depend on what the policemen will say. there is no question that the crime was committed because the policeman released this young woman who was a minor, not to a home without informing a juvenile magistrate. or her family. that's legal. they did that because they received the telephone call from the prime minister in person who said. >> charlie: the prime minister made the call not his staff. >> his staff made the call and he got on the phone and he spoke in person to the head of the police station. >> charlie: what has she said about all this, the young woman in question. >> well there is what she said in telephone calls to her friends that were tapped and therefore we have --
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>> charlie: what did she say. >> she was asking for millions from berlusconi, blackmailing him, getting money for her silence. what she testified in her deposition is different. she claimed she never had sex with him and she claimed to have today him she was 24 and therefore he didn't know she was a minor. >> charlie: there will be judges to make the decision. >> three female judges. we already know their names. >> charlie: there's an element of not just you, but speak to the idea of sort of how women in italy feel about this and sort of battling. >> there are not only women in the opposition. i have a lot of friends who have voted for berlusconi and are offended and humiliated. this is the last one of diffused
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candles involving women. italy had a vibrant feminist movement in the 60's and 70's, and nowadays we do have women remarkably great women in all possible, you know, levels of society. we have writers, we have scientists, we have athletes. but they are not the role model of young women. the role models are just sho girls -- >> charlie: television. >> exactly. >> charlie: we brought together over the weekend representatives of his empire and had a meeting with him. >> yes. >> charlie: to do what. >> it was recently. i guess to strategize. he feels he's paranoid. i guess everybody's a bit paranoid but he feels completely under attack and so he decided to call everybody up to strategize, to see who was doing what, what information did they
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have. what can we do to counter attack this false propanda. >> charlie: he says it as political. >> yes. i'm convinced that he's convinced that there is a political element. there is a strong political element to this. >> charlie: is there. >> i suspect there is. >> charlie: are the italians embarrassed by this or not. >> there was a text read by frank whose wife is a nobel prize winner written by a fellow actor who i know, who said the title was i'm proud to be ashamed of myself. d basically said i'm ashamed when in italy, i'm ashamed when i'm abroad. i'm ashamed of not being able to think about my country without being ashamed. so i think there is half of italy that is ashamed of what is going on in the country. and there is the other half who i think is not aware what is
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going on. >> charlie: is there a feeling on the part of berlusconi that he's too powerful because of his ownership of media and because of his billionaire status and because he has political power that he's untouchable. that he can get away with anything? >> well, yes. and because he had the public opinion behind him, he felt. because he got -- >> charlie: is the church interested in this the a all. >> but the church is also interested in its own interests. >> charlie: its own interests are having a good relationship with the head of state. >> with the head of state and coalition that's a centered right coalition which is anti-abortion. his politics tend to trump the moral aspect. up until now. there is clearly voice of dissent and i think a german mope will have much less patience than italian pope.
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i think sooner or later they will. >> charlie: suppose he's not convicted or doesn't go to trial. and he's still prime minister. what will be the political consequences? >> well, i think it would be hard if there is a trial and therefore the prosecutor will have the opportunity to present the evidence. it will be difficult politically to sustain. the governor already lost pieces just a few months ago. then because of the lack of alternative, you know, he managed to survive barely. i think it will survive but the political debate is basicallyman up lies -- monopolized by this. because berlusconi runs that, it is not about center-right or left, it's about pro berlusconi
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or anti-beryl kind. his own allies will realize in a moment where the economy's in trouble, the country's not doing well, there will be need to go past the berlusconi issue. >> charlie: thank you. this is a fascinating story. thank you very much. and we should know something by april 6th. >> or before. >> charlie: or before. >> because of this maneuvering. if he manages to get out of that. and there are a also other trials that are lined up to come up after this one. in the end it will be quite hard for him to stay on in this situation. unless he doesn't call elections again and then who knows what the outcome will be. >> charlie: thank you. great to see you. >> thank you. >> james taylor's here. he is one of america's timeless musicians. he started out in the 1960's, he paved the way for the
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singer-song writer genre. he's part of the american musical cannon. he has five grammies gold and multiplatinum awards. in 2000 he was indeducted into the rock and roll hall of fame both as a singer and song writer. this spring he's hosted concerts at carnegie hall called perspective. here's a look at some it. ♪ darling you are my only one. ♪ you are my only one. ♪ now you're my only one. music ♪ hey baby the sky's on fire,
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i'm dying. i'm going to caroline ♪ ♪ sun's so hot ♪ i've seen fire and i've seen rain ♪ i've seen sunny days thought they'd never end. ♪ i've seen lonely times when you could not find a friend. ♪ but i always thought i would see you again.
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♪ moon light lady ♪ ♪et m go down in my heap oh ♪ my sweet baby jane. [applause] >> charlie: i am pleased to have james taylor back on this program. welcome. >> thank you. that was a shock. y time i see you i feel good. >> charlie: because we have this life that's sort of interconnected. and it's north carolina in part. in part i worked with your father and in part i knew the family. and in part price is part of this too as we were just talking. >> yes. i think it may be different today to see yourself, to come from north carolina, to think of
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yourself as a north carolinaiam. it becomes more homogenized because of the globa experice. it was great to be a north carolinans, particularly those who have left and who escaped and sort of refer back to it, i think we have that in common. the period of time -- he left north carolina and then came back. but that was a major sor of, i think you and i have that in common, that kinship of knowing
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that what that is. sort of being on the outside a little bit. >> charlie: so now you're going to be at carnegie hall four nights? >> yes, it is. >> charlie: what are you going to be doing? >> well the first night is a gala and that's where most of the work is, that's hard work is trying to be the host of a gala. and i have good experience. i have good instructions from my friend sting who actually is going to be pt ofhat evening, but he's done a gala performance, he and his wife trudey, every year for the past 15 or 16 years, 17 years. >> charlie: for the rain forest or something like that. >> i've played 15 of them i think at this point. and so that's been my main connection with carnegie hall. but it's kim, my amazing wife kim where is she's worked most ofer wking life with the
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boston symphony and is now on the board of the boston symphony. i think it was the request came basically through her and her connections there. >> charlie: it came because of a recognition of what you meant to music. >> well, you know not everybody agrees with that. but thankfully enough. >> charlie: a lot of people do. they really do. >> i, know, i've become more and more grateful for it every day. it's an amazing thing. >> charlie somow you knew way back when the beatles, you were in london and that door was open. >> it was. that was a life changing moment to, when peter asher brought me to apple records, it was one of those, i had been in a band here in new york city and i had, that
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had sort of died of starvation and neglect and my father essentiay resede. he could hear that i was in trouble on the phone and he showed up in a rented station wagon. he said you stay right where you are. and i did, i just, i stayed put. and about 19 hours later, he showed up at my doorstep and drove me back down to north carolina. it was, it meant a lot to me, it always has. i wrote a song about it called jump up behind me. and i stayed at home for about sixonth liing my wounds and then having spent my college education money, i got my parents to buy me a plane ticket to london. i went over to visit a friend at martha's vineyard and started pushing my music around to various people who are
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encouraging to me and eventually peter asher brought my demo to apple records and played it for paul. and i actually went in and additioned. i was the first act that they gned to their record label. >> charlie: paul sat in on that didn't he. >> he listened to that and he sat this on the album. he placed base on caroline on my mind, our first iteration of it. but it was a life changing moment. you know, from that point o everything changed. i mean you could say that every moment but that one was an obvious one. >> charlie: you saw it. you felt like a doorñi is openig to somewhere. >> that's right, i did. i mean, i uldn bieve it. you know, two days beforehand, i had been in the great sea. i mean i considered myself a music but i was in the great mass of people who idolized the beatles and then suddenly they were sponsoring me in a way.
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>> charlie: and then soon thereafter you're on the cover of "time" magazine. >> this was big too. and i think that you know the process of starting very privately and basically in isolation and almost because of the period ofisolatn srting to make a certain kind of if i can allow myself art, you know, to then go public with it and basically turn yourself into a public person, that's, you know, it's what is to be wished for. certainly it's what we all want but it's a tough transition for a lot of people. and in my case, you know, i ha sort of jumped out of the family tree and ran like hell. and only to find myself back at the center of the family, you
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know. it was very sort of get what you resist as they say. >> charlie: get what you resist. >> yes. >> charlie: do you consider sweet baby janes, caroline on my mind, as good songs as you ever written. >> yes. they are good songs. i still sing them and i still connect with them. and i'm, you know, i am, i'm thrilled to have written them, you know. i'm thrilled that i don't really feel as though i write songs. i feel as though i hear them first. and remember them. and get them down. but i don't, it's such a mysterious and subconscious process that i couldn't really say that i wrote those songs. they just channeled them sort of or they happened to me first,
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you know. so but you know, i also feel as though, you know, there was this period of time that, you know, thankfully where i was very successful and got a lot of attention. and i'm known as that person who wrote my greatest hits. sort of two collections of greatest hits. >> charlie: didn't it tell 10 million copies. >> i think it did. >> charlie: that's what i heard. is the creative process still the same. >> there's a sort of lightening bolt kind of moment when you're visited by a song and you get hopefully, sometimes it's a whole song. but sometimes it's just a fragment. and then you have to collect those fragments and often later on sequester yourself and hide away somewhere and work them. push them around. >> charlie: look like a sculpture.
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>> i suppose it is a a litt bit like that. add and remove clay. yes. i think the lightening strike part happens less frequently, partially because i felt a real pressure to express myself early on. and now i feel an expectation to express myself. and -- >> charlie: an expectation? >> yes. it's sort of what i do. >> charlie: right. >> it's what's expected of me i think. i think you get better at the craft of it. i also think that you tend to write the same songs over and over again. there's nothing new under the sun. but -- >> charlie: you write the same songs over and over again, what's the common denominator. >> they're a love song, they're
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celebratory songs, they're confessional or angry songs, songs yearning for home. >> charlie: you said something like this, you wouldn't be where you are today unless you had gone through the period of self medication. >> well you know we were talking a little built about awe -- addiction, about my father's drinking. there are some people who drink to get blasted and who are looking for oblivion. but most people who are addicts are self medicating and they're just trying to feel normal really. i mean, it's just that the drugs that haveeen available, they're getting better and better, the pharmaceuticals among a few others throughout our lives. they, they're getting better and
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better at actually treating the human condition. but i don't know. the study of addiction is very interesting to me and i did survive my own period of abuse. you know. but again, i don't think, i think it did serve me in a way. i think it's dangerous to recommend it. i think that -- >> charlie: i didn't take it you recommending it but i did hear you i think say however i came out on the other end is the process and made me who i am. >> it's definitely part of it. >> charlie: if you self medicate to become normal are you pretty normal. >> i think i am prett normal. and or at least i belong to a very popular subsegment, you
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know. and you know, but i think human life is not normal. i think we were evolved physiologically, perhaps, to a state that people lived in 5,000 years ago maybe. but i think today we're always trying to catch up with the changes that we make up until we control, we have so mh of a capacity to change what we live in that there's no way to call it normal or to say it's where we should be. the i just get the feeling as though i was born with a certain set of, you know, with a certain feeling, maybe like a difficulty being in my own skin, that would have been fine if i were scandinavian 5,000 years ago. it would have matched my condition. but living in human society, i
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just ran into trouble, you know. and i think everybody does to a greater or lesser extent. i did feel as though i was born on the dark side of the moon and that i didn't have a place in this world when i was, when i was 15. but i think that i've been relatively at peace for a while. >> charlie: you also found happiness in marriage. >> yes, that's right. i can't believe my luck in finding kim. i do think i've survived to a point that's relatively stable now. and it feels that way. but i couldn't really call the life i lead normal either. i think it's amazingly sort of self centered, you know, that i
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am myself for a living and i so of am, aswe are right now, i'mñr the talk of this conversation and it's, that's not normal. >> charlie: but you se to be handling it just fine. >> i'm doing okay. thank you, if you say so. >> charlie: i don't mean just this conversation but i mean i've seen you performing. it seems to me that you have found a variety of stages. you understand who you are, where you are, where you're going. >> it starts with a great good fortune of being born a good human being. how likely is it to be in one oó these, to live in here. and there's the place that life takes us, which is, you know. >> charlie: it's a pretty good trip. >> you can be grateful for what you're got, that's a great state to try to be in.
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it's hard. >> charlie: this is your an verse e -- an versity at carnegie hall. >> that's right. i called steve martin and bette midler and they agreed to do the show with me and, is going to be okay. >> charlie: the second night is going to be a bit. >> it's called roots or sources, i can't remember what we decided on. it's basically james taylor's musical dna and the songs that i was influenced by. >> charlie: what's going to be in that? >> well, that's me and danny. >> charlie: oh my god, danny's going to be back. >> he's going to come back and this. >> charlie: where does he live. >> he lives here in new york and up in connecticut, in grande, connecticut. he and i when we were 13 years old started playing guitar together. we did our first gigs together and he was in the flying machine
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with me. he introduced me to peter asher who opened the door for me. so we go way back and we've asked robert cray, allison krauss -- we're just going to do an evening of favorite music. >> charlie: anybody named king going to be there. >> i haven't asked carol to join us. it was a great year, it was a real surprise. >> charlie: why was it a surprise? >> well, i mean we knew for years every time we'd see each other, we said when are we going to do it begin. but we, and at one point carol said do you know james we always said this but if we're actually going to do it, it bettere soon. so the 50th anniversary of the
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trubidor where steve martin and bonnie raitte, kris christopherson. that has been our venue before in the early 70's and that worked so well that we decided we should take it on road. >> charlie: you did pretty well. >> it was great. it was a great year. >> charlie: and it continues. >> continues o i just spoke to her. she's really well. i was just going to say, carnegie hall is an emblematic.
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i always had to work and keep at it. i certainly had a huge success early on but it hasn't been so overwhelming that it was impossible to sustain. and i made it through my emergence. i was probably, you know, i was a cartoon version of myself but, you know, i got to sort of a plateau and then have sort of chugged along merrily ever since. a couple of bounce along the way but it's been a surprisingly steady ride mostly thanks to i have an audience that supports me, sustains me. you know, the lens of sort of
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super star public celebrity the lingers for a second and passes on. but the people who come to see me again and again, they've really kept me a afloat and i really love them for it. >> charlie: well said. also you teach how to play guitar. >> i noticed people were using my technique in a way of teaching. people were teaching my style. so i thought that one thing we should do is offer on the website a series of guitar lessons, how to play guitar like james taylor. and so we've embarked upon that. >> charlie: if i go to your website i might be able to play the guitar like you. >> there's a chance, there's a good chance, yes. it's a pretty simple technique and i set about to explain it.
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and we have some great, we've developed these technological camera angle from open side the guitar and another one for the left hand that really i think works, works really we. so we're having fun doing that and there's another album on the burner. >> charlie: when will it be born? >> you know, i'm going to work through the end of july this year and then i'm calling it off and i'm going home and i'll finish these songs. >> charlie: it's great to have you here. congratulations on this and everything else. >> thank you. thank you so much charlie. it's great to see you again.
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